Jump to content

Rise and shine

Recommended Posts

Rise_and_shine_card_full.jpg Image:

After four months of darkness, it is finally time to rise and shine for the crew at Concordia Research Station in Antarctica. The most-welcome Sun finally made its appearance on 11 August and ESA-sponsored medical doctor Nick Smith was not about to miss it.

For nine months Nick and his fellow crew mates have been living and working in one of the most isolated, confined and extreme environments on Earth, with no way in or out of the Station during the winter-over period.   

Nick is overseeing experiments in human physiology and biology, atmospheric physics, meteorology, and astronomy, among other disciplines. Along with the rest of the crew, he is also maintaining the base – one of only three to run year-round in the Antarctic.

Four months of complete darkness is quite the challenge, and one researchers are very interested in studying from a physiological and psychological point of view. From questionnaires to blood and stool samples, the crew are poked and prodded to understand how better to prepare humans for deep space travel.

Social dynamics are also of interest to researchers during the period of darkness. Stress brought on by lack of sunlight, changing sleep patterns, fatigue and moodiness can affect the group. The crew are especially encouraged to take on group activities and get creative to combat the isolation of the winter. And not just with their own station crew.

Bases across Antarctica take part in the annual Antarctic Film Festival. Crews from each base submit an entry for different categories, and the creativity and cooperation required to come up with an idea and script, film and edit the entry makes for friendly competition and camaraderie. Look out for 2021 entries here.

The first sunrise is always a remarkable moment, signalling the home stretch of their Antarctic residency. From now on the winter crew will start preparing for summer and the return of scientists that arrive for the warmer months starting in November. The base is cleaned thoroughly, machinery is serviced, tents are erected and heated, and the runway is cleared of snow. Extensive work is required to welcome the new arrivals back to the base at the end of the world. 

Follow the adventures in science and socialisation at Concordia on the blog.

View the full article

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Similar Topics

    • By NASA
      NASA/Radislav Sinyak Technicians lift NASA’s Orion spacecraft out of the Final Assembly and System Testing cell on June 28, 2024. The integrated spacecraft, which will be used for the Artemis II mission to orbit the Moon, has been undergoing final rounds of testing and assembly, including end-to-end performance verification of its subsystems and checking for leaks in its propulsion systems.
      A 30-ton crane returned Orion into the recently renovated altitude chamber where it underwent electromagnetic testing. The spacecraft now will undergo a series of tests that will subject it to a near-vacuum environment by removing air, thus creating a space where the pressure is extremely low. This results in no atmosphere, similar to the one the spacecraft will experience during future lunar missions. The data recorded during these tests will be used to qualify the spacecraft to safely fly the Artemis II astronauts through the harsh environment of space.
      Get updates on the Artemis II mission.
      Image Credit: NASA/Radislav Sinyak
      View the full article
    • By NASA
      2 min read
      NASA Volunteers Shine at American Astronomical Society Meeting
      The American Astronomical Society (AAS) met in New Orleans this week, attended by thousands of astronomers and reporters, and NASA volunteers were in the spotlight.
      Prof. Amy Lien from the University of Tampa (center) announces the launch of NASA’s new Burst Chaser at an AAS press conference. Credit: Jacob Hansman (University of Tampa) Austin Rothermich began his journey as a NASA volunteer when he was an undergraduate at the University of Central Florida. He spoke at an AAS press conference about 89 brown dwarfs discovered via the Backyard Worlds: Planet 9 citizen science project. These brown dwarfs—Jupiter-sized balls of gas that never turned into stars—are special because they are ultracool, and because they appear to be orbiting stars and other objects, which makes it possible to learn much more about them. At the same conference, Dr. Jackie Faherty from the American Museum of Natural History announced another breakthrough discovery from NASA’s Backyard Worlds team: a brown dwarf that appears to have aurorae! This remarkable object was discovered by NASA volunteer Dan Caselden. Then, later in the week, Caselden himself was awarded the Chambliss amateur achievement award from the AAS for his work as a NASA volunteer. This is Caselden’s second major prize in the last four months! Zooniverse, a key NASA’s partner, made a big announcement at the meeting. The Zooniverse citizen science platform has now surpassed 2.5 million participants, 750 million classifications, 400 publications, and 20 NASA-funded projects. Dr. Laura Trouille highlighted NASA’s Daily Minor Planet project in her presentation. As if that weren’t enough, this same conference saw the launch of NASA’s new Burst Chaser project. This project aims to unveil the largest explosions in the universe! You can join the fun here. Wow! Big congratulations to everyone involved!
      Facebook logo @DoNASAScience @DoNASAScience Share

      Last Updated Jan 12, 2024 Related Terms
      Astrophysics Citizen Science View the full article
    • By European Space Agency
      Europe will strengthen its autonomy, leadership and sustainability in space, following today’s decision to increase ESA’s budget by 17% compared to the last Ministerial meeting in 2019.
      View the full article
    • By Amazing Space
      Earth-rise - seen from lunar orbit. Earth Seen From The Moon #Shorts
    • By NASA
      Together We Rise
  • Check out these Videos

  • Create New...